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Stuart Phinn and Andy Lowe_TERN's national ecosystem data infrastructure is delivering productivity and efficiency gains for Australia

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Stuart Phinn and Andy Lowe_TERN's national ecosystem data infrastructure is delivering productivity and efficiency gains for Australia

  1. 1. Productivity and Efficiency Gains in EcosystemScience and Management for AustraliaBy: Professors Stuart Phinn and Andrew Lowe TERN - Associate Science Directors
  2. 2. Presentation Question:How does Australia make the most of its ecosystem research data collection and sharing facilities for improving ecosystem science and management, and sustain them in perpetuity?
  3. 3. Presentation Aims(1) Outline factors requiring long term ecosystem research data collection and sharing.(2) Present TERN’s Science Plan to develop an enduring resource that is used as part of standard practice in ecosystem science and management in Australia.
  4. 4. Contents1. Needs for sustained ecosystem science infrastructure.2. Building a collaborative network of ecosystem scientists where data publication, sharing and re-use is standard.3. Sustaining essential ecosystem research data collection, analysis, modelling and synthesis activities.4. Scientific directions for sustaining long-term operations.
  5. 5. 1. Needs for sustained ecosystem science infrastructure• Current and future ecosystem science and management challenges• Ecosystem science without long term data?• Models for sustaining ecosystem science infrastructure
  6. 6. • Current ecosystem science and management challenges• Lack of accessible mechanisms for inter-linking science and policy at all levels of government?• Assured funding for pure and applied research – at sufficient levels and on a sustainable basis.• Lack of a defined ecosystem science community and lobby.• Lack of a coordinated, longer term, strategic vision for ecosystem research in Australia . Source: Longstaff, B.J., T.J.B. Carruthers, W.C. Dennison, T.R. Lookingbill, J.M. Hawkey, J.E. Thomas, E.C. Wicks, and J. Woerner (eds) Integrating and applying science: A handbook for effective coastal ecosystem assessment. IAN Press, Cambridge, Maryland.U.S.A.,
  7. 7. • Current ecosystem science and management challengesCritical ecosystem science questions driving TERN activities:• How are Australia’s ecosystems changing over time?• What is the impact of management policies on Australian ecosystems and ecosystem processes?• How are the spatial distributions of Australian plant and animal species changing are some becoming extinct?• How are introduced plant and animal species affecting native species?• Are natural disturbance regimes (fire, flood, cyclones) changing over time and what is their impact?
  8. 8. • Ecosystem science without long term data?Key questions unable to be examined:• What type of vegetation is present?• What are the impacts of disturbance and recovery?• What are the impacts of management activities?• What is a “natural change” and what is “human induced”? max min Non-per mask
  9. 9. • Ecosystem science with long term data
  10. 10. • Ecosystem science without long term data?Longitudinal trends vegetation coveron Main Camp plots in the SimpsonDesert Study - cover of spinifex (aliveand dead) assessed by eye at six fixedquadrats on 3 – 12 1-ha study plots,expressed as means ± SE. Longitudinal trends in fauna populations at the Main Camp site in the Simpson Desert Study: capture rates of Spinifex Hopping- mouse Notomys alexis Dickman, C.R., Wardle, G.M., Foulkes, J. N. and de Preu, N. (2013) Desert complex environments. Chapter 10 . In: Lindenmayer, D.B., Burns, E., Thurgate, N., and Lowe, A. (Editors)(2013). Monitoring environmental change. CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.
  11. 11. • Models for sustaining ecosystem science infrastructure?TERN’s Science Plan:• Aim:Explain how Australian ecosystem scientists and decision makers can use TERNinfrastructure to conduct and access the highest quality science required tounderstand and manage Australian ecosystems.
  12. 12. 2. Building a collaborative network of ecosystem scientists where datapublication, sharing and re-use is standard• Research Code of Conduct and Best Practice• TERN and the Ecosystem Science Research Cycle• Collaborative (non-disciplinary) Networks
  13. 13. • Research Code of Conduct and Best Practice• The Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research cites ‘good stewardship of public resources used to conduct research’ as one of the key pillars of a strong research culture.• Responsibilities of institutions: 2.1 Retain research data and primary materials 2.2 Provide secure research data storage and record-keeping facilities 2.3 Identify ownership of research data and primary materials 2.4 Ensure security + confidentiality of research data +primary materials• Responsibilities of researchers: 2.5 Retain research data and primary materials 2.6 Manage storage of research data and primary materials 2.7 Maintain confidentiality of research data and primary materials
  14. 14. • Ecosystem science research cycle(s) Ecosystem Science Enhanced ability to Research output: revise, question and Knowledge gap: new data and expand knowledge research publications questions r Data analysis, Proposal and integration and planning synthesis Storage, Data collection,preservation and verification, Enables large scale and discoverability quality assurance coordinated data of data and control collection, sharing and multiple re-uses Data + meta-data, licensing
  15. 15. • TERN and the Ecosystem Science Research Cycle: Impacts• TERN’s infrastructure significantly expands the traditional data collection/analysis process to a more complete research data life-cycle .• TERN’s infrastructure enables data to be collected, stored, linked to appropriate meta-data and licensing• Data can be discovered and re-used by the Australian and international ecosystem science and management communities.
  16. 16. • TERN and the Ecosystem Science Research Cycle: ImpactsFrom scientific and research investment points of view, this enables:• Multiple returns on an initial investment in data collection when data re re-used;• Data collection methods to be shared, reviewed and replicated;• Established and nationally accepted data storage, meta-data and licensing resource;• Coordinated ongoing investment in ecosystem data collection infrastructure and operational programs
  17. 17. • Collaborative (non)-disciplinary networks Source: www.fas.org
  18. 18. 3. Sustaining essential ecosystem data collection, analysis, modelling and synthesis activities• Understanding the decision-making process and implementing evidence-based policy• Essential Data Collection, Analysis, Modelling and Synthesis• Steps for Sustaining Ecosystem Data Collection, Analysis, Modelling and Synthesis
  19. 19. Understanding the decision-making process and implementing evidence-based policy request Policy and legislation collate Incentivise derive and drive Recommend- ations for action Knowledge On- and decision- analysis translate making inform ground and activities incorporating synthesis and economic and political drivers outcomes knowledge publish gaps collate Monitoring outcomes
  20. 20. Essential Data Collection• Current essential data: - Operational - Legislated• Commonly accepted and widely used: - “Essential Climate Variables” - Establish “Essential Ecosystem Variables”• Examples from global observing systems Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services
  21. 21. Essential Data Collection• Global Climate Observing System - www.wmo.int/pages/prog/gcos“All Essential Climate Variables are technically and economically feasible forsystematic observation. It is these variables for which international exchange isrequired for both current and historical observations.”
  22. 22. Essential Data Collection, Analysis, Modelling and Synthesis • Establish ecosystem variables collected through TERN Auscover Ozflux Multi-Scale Plot NetworkAusPlots Transects Network LTERN Supersites Network Coasts Soils
  23. 23. Steps for Sustaining Ecosystem Data Collection, Analysis,Modelling and SynthesisFor 2013-20 focus on:• Providing and maintaining data collection and processing infrastructure• Adopting the “ecosystem science research cycle” as standard practice in all areas of Australian ecosystem science research and working with “evidence-based policy cycle”• Enabling the coordination of ecosystem science community needs• Providing integration and coordination functions across terrestrial, atmospheric, aquatic and marine ecosystem data collection and sharing activities
  24. 24. 4. Scientific directions for sustaining long-term operations• How are long term funding directions set?• Planning the Strategic or Decadal Plan
  25. 25. How are long term funding directions set?• Key science questions?• Scientific consensus for decadal and strategic plans• Public requests• Political interests and process
  26. 26. How are long term funding directions set?• Focus on using a collaborative model:• For Australia’s research fabric to remain sustainable it requires funding for national research infrastructure.• Address the needs identified in the 2011 Strategic Roadmap for Australian Research Infrastructure.• ………the provision of marine, terrestrial and atmospheric observing systems……• Landmark investments relate to large-scale facilities that are often regarded as part of the global research capacity and that engage national and international collaborators
  27. 27. How are long term funding directions set?• Societal challenges to be addressed using the National Research Investment Plan: • Living in a Changing Environment • Promoting Population Health and Wellbeing • Managing Our Food and Water Assets • Securing Australia’s Place in a Changing World • Lifting Productivity and Economic Growth
  28. 28. • Example approach of linking needs across a dispersed community – Earth Observation Strategic Plan + National Policy
  29. 29. Unpacking the EOS approach and learnings for TERN• Community that is collaborative open and working together • Ecosystem science community large (>5000) needs coordination, individuals and peak bodies• As group agree and prioritise key infrastructure • Imagine large infrastructure that supports work – formalise ideas – decadal plan• Justify investment - economic, national standing & public good • Technological advances- sensing, analysis, informatics and modelling • Australia as a world leader • Jobs (core ~5000, associated 10-20,000) • Monitoring and managing the earth system that sustains us • Ecosystem Services = US$33 trillion per year >> Global National Product = US$18 trillion • Cost to save all threatened species = $81 billion << Bankers’ bonuses = $156 billion• Coordinated lobbying for high level support • Societies, groups and large projects (AAS, ESA, TERN, NERP, CoE, Wentworth) • Individuals (Fellows AAS, Laureate, Future) • Government and political
  30. 30. TERN’s role as a coordinating ecosystem research network• Catalyzing and establishing a coordinating group with these initial tasks: • Determine what representation is required for Australian ecosystem sciences • Determine the priorities for these communities. • Engage relevant professional communities and bodies • Establish a process to deliver a Decadal Plan for Ecosystem Science Agreed to progress with Ecological Society of Australia
  31. 31. A Future for Ecosystem Science ? Managing Ecosystems Data CollectionEcosystem Science Education + Data Storage, Curation and SharingUnderstanding Ecosystems Training Data Processing and AnalysisCommonwealth, State Long Term Funding Research + Educationand Local Governments Institutions Coordinated Ecosystem Science Communities Ecological Bio-geophysical Informatics Spatial Analysis & Modelling
  32. 32. International Partners TERN is supported by the Australian Government through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy and the Super Science Initiative
  33. 33. Questions?Professor Stuart Phinn s.phinn@uq.edu.au Professor Andy Lowea.lowe@adelaide.edu.au www.tern.org.au

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